BEIRUT – An under-construction building designed by British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid in central Beirut burnt on Tuesday in the third fire to break out in the capital within a week.
“We do not know the reasons why the fire originated, but it only took half an hour to extinguish it,” George Abou Moussa, chief of operations of the Lebanese Civil Defense, told EFE.
He added that 50 people, including Civil Defense personnel and firefighters, participated in extinguishing the blaze that broke out in a building, which has been under construction for years and was allocated to be a commercial center.
The flames did not spread to any other buildings, he said.
It was the third blaze to break out within a week in the capital, after a warehouse of tire and oil in Beirut’s port was torched, causing a large plume of black smoke over the city, two days after another small fire in the same area.
The building is located in Beirut’s market, full of shops that were completely destroyed by a powerful explosion that hit the port on Aug. 4.
The explosion, powered by nearly 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate, has left more than 190 people dead, 6,500 injured and 300,000 others homeless.
Zaha Hadid was born in Baghdad and was the first woman to win the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize.